Blickensderfer No. 5 Typewriter

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This Blickensderfer Moderl number 5 typewriter was manufactured by the Blickensderfer Manufacturing Compmany of Stamford, Connecticut between 1893 and 1896. The Blickensderfer was advertised as having one quarter of the parts that other typewriters used, allowing for easier operation, maintenance, and repair. Other features include a tabulator and a scaled with slots for carriage stops. Blickensderfer typewriters also had a patented type action using their patented “type wheel,” a metal wheel containing all the characters which would rotate and strike the paper to create the inked mark. The type wheel allowed for easier type alignment, less jamming, and an easier way to change type fonts. The simplicity of the Blickensderfer made it portable, and this model had a wooden cover with a leather handle for easy carrying. While QWERTY keyboards could be ordered, by default most Blickensderfer typewriters eschewed the QWERTY keyboard in favor of a “Scientific” keyboard that put the most used letters “D, H, I, A, T, E, N, S, O, and R” on the bottom row nearest the space bar to minimize hand movement.
George C. Blickensderfer founded the Blickensderfer Manufacturing Company in Stamford, Connecticut in 1893. The Blickensderfer Manufacturing Company produced nine different models of typewriters, including an electric typewriter, and operated until George Blickenderfer’s death in 1917. The company was reformed as the Blick Typewriter Company for a few years before the Blickensderfer patents and designs were sold and manufactured by a variety of different companies.
Currently not on view
Blickensderfer Manufacturing Company
overall: 6 1/2 in x 12 3/4 in x 11 in; 16.51 cm x 32.385 cm x 27.94 cm
ID Number
catalog number
accession number
Credit Line
Edith R. Meggers
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Work and Industry: Mechanisms
Computers & Business Machines
Data Source
National Museum of American History


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